Monday, September 10, 2007

Survival Means Immediate Change.

Friends, the APEC Summit has come and gone. The 21 countries involved did their billion dollar trade deals and signed onto some vague commitment to have a look at greenhouse gases. Wow!

There is a real sense of denial in the world today. Capitalist thinking (Profit First - Ignore the environmental Cost) has not yet accepted that the world cannot continue on its current course. People, in the main, have not accepted that the way we live is unsustainable, that their materialism, which the Capitalist Kings have carefully nurtured, is destroying our physical world and is also creating huge, divisive inequality plus a moral vacuum across the world.

The most ironic thing I heard during the Summit was the Chinese argument that we can't fully implement the reduction in gas emissions because we're trying to lift our poor out of poverty. This is an absurd proposition. The ones making the money out of industrialization are not the poor but the entrepreneurs. Peasant farmers in China are being thrown off their land without compensation to build factories and high rise apartments!

The other ridiculous argument used to justify the continuance of the rapacious, polluting Capitalist/Industrialist Juggernaut is the one promoted by both America, Australia and others. It's the 'we don't want to lose any jobs' mantra, a favorite among politicians. The rationale is that we can't change the economic system that is destroying our world because some people might have to move to other occupations. The logic of that escapes me completely.

The solution, I feel, involves completely rejecting materialism and returning to a much more simple, decentralized, healthy, semi-rural lifestyle, one based upon sustainability. There could be a series of country towns created surrounded by farms which produce all the food required for local consumption as well as wine. Each town could have communal land which would allow those who live in town and provide specialized services like health care, etc, to grow some food, get their hands deep in the soil, get close to nature. There would be community centers where the arts would be taught, where artistic talents could be developed, where people could discuss and debate things like philosophy, psychology, spirituality, learn hobbies, etc. Sounds like Utopia, eh?

Products requiring factory or laboratory technology could be undertaken, not by greedy capitalists, but by Government run enterprises where exacting standards were applied to ensure no pollution or negative carcinogen-inducing effects were created.

My thoughts are still evolving as to further solutions to the current catastrophe but surely doing nothing or applying band aid measures is no solution at all!

What do you think?


Renegade Eye said...

If China is as polluted, as they say everyday on the news, it has to reach a point, where some action will be mandatory.

If you prefer a rural lifestyle, as your choice of how to live is one thing, being driven from an urban area is another.

Daniel said...

It is not a matter of being driven out of urban areas, Renegade. We humans have to find a more sustainable, less destructive way to live otherwise eventually we'll cease to exist!


enigma4ever said...

I am so glad that you survived the about that Utopia....let's get it started...

( ahem,...I have posted my photo...and I thought I would let you know.....whelp..I mean you should see what you have invited to the Utopia right?....)

(BTW I love what you said about we need to live a better way to live together....)

Daniel said...

Great to 'see' you, Enigma. Very impressive. I won't reciprocate as I don't want to frighten the horses!

Getting started? Well, I'm about to try to list the main principles in point form, kind of like a creed. I'll post them ASAP. Cheers.

Monica Thatcher said...

Hi Dan
Have been giving the Movement a lot of thought and have come up with a potential problem that will need addressing. What we are suggesting among many things, is a religion free society. This would be a gigantic step for many people and one which I am certain will cause outrage and or despair for those caught up in its insipid fantasies. This will result in possible radical resistance and violence against the movement. We will need to replace the fantasized hope of a better hearafter, or heaven, or whatever with the actual reality that it is within the living grasp of all. Religious types will need that. This in turn will need strength, determination and resilience. Just like Gandhi.
I think the only sensible way to approach our aim would be a gradual change based upon the perfect example of model new Utopian Communities. These of course being the pioneers and basis for widespread Utopian communities. To that end we will need to establish a political base to 'preach from' so to speak, which will of course for the time being need to operate in the current systems. I feel Utopian foundations would be eligible for charitable status which would help, but realistically , we need to start raising funds! So my suggestion is that you post up a 'donate' button or ' help to launch a new world' button linked to a Paypal account in the name of The Utopians. Once this is in place we can start making more noise.

Have a good one

Anonymous said...

Really gr8 post Dan.

betmo said...

i think it is a good idea- but i have a feeling it would be the same people implementing it as always. the number of progressive thinkers is a small one. but on that note- happy monday! cheers!

Daniel said...

Monica, Neo and Betmo, thanks for calling by. Monica, the points you have raised are very pertinent.

The bulk of the ideas contained in my Utopian Movement are, I guess, ones that are going to upset many people: those who are religiously inclined and those whose lives are engaged in the pursuit of money for example. Others who hold elitist views about their nation or race will also be upset as will those who fervently support one side or other of politics, etc.

The question that must be answered first is: how many people are prepared to make real changes in their lives in order to make the world a better place for everyone?

When I get the feeling that enough people really care and will actually do something, then is the time to start thinking about funding. Your thoughts are welcome.


geoff said...

"Capitalist thinking (Profit First - Ignore the Cost)"

Ah but Daniel. That's not capitalist thinking at all. "Profit first - Cut the costs", is more like it.

Just sayin' is all ...

Lucyp said...

Governments wanting to protect their own i can understand, don't agree with them, but understand why they do not want to see change.
The everyday people who actually agree with them and swallow the lines spun out by the Governments are the ones i find perplexing. Useful Idiots is very apt for them.

Daniel said...

Loved your comment, Geoff!

Lucy, what worries me about the success of the UTOPIAN movement is that people in the main are resistant to change! Habits die hard.


Daniel said...

"Others before us have tried. The Shakers, Oneida Community, even the
hippies of the 60's with their communes. All have failed. The baser side of human nature prevailed over their better selves. Greed, jealousy, self-righteousness all played a part. I'm not sure that would change."

I thought I'd share these wise though sobering words with you, ones that were part of a private email sent to me by Ann Adams also known as Granny from Is America Burning. It's better to know your enemy before you engage with them!

She did go on to say that she would work in her local community trying person by person to convince them that building a selfless community was a better option.

Is the task impossible?

Anonymous said...

The solution, I feel, involves completely rejecting materialism and returning to a much more simple, decentralized, healthy, semi-rural lifestyle, one based upon sustainability.

Though I agree that a more energy-stingy, sustainable, less materialistic is imperative (and right-f*ckin-now, BTW!), I'm not so sure that "semi-rural" is achievable. Wouldn't that require a huge reduction in the human population? Say down to about 3.5 to 4B?

Daniel said...

Kvatch, the world is overpopulated. It just needs the application of the Chinese remedy (one child per family) for a generation and the problem is largely solved.

We just have to get people's minds around the reality that the Western lifestyle is counterproductive. Cheers.